Monday, May 28, 2012

Austentatious By Alyssa Goodnight

Austentatious is an awesome story!!  What happens when a nerdy engineer meets a HOT Scottish musician? Throw a magical journal into the mix and life can get a little out of control! All of which makes a humorous story that I couldn’t put down!

The day Nicola James begins writing in an antique journal, her "Life Plan" begins to unravel. Her entries disappear only to be replaced with tidbits of advice on life and romance. Very skeptical, Nic tries to ignore the advice “Fairy Jane” is giving her because magic can’t possibly exist...can it?
Sean MacInnes is determined to get to know Nicola. They meet at a wedding after he rescues her from a near disastrous mushroom incident. He immediately melts my, oh, I mean, her heart with his charming and playful personality. But he cannot possibly be the one....a Hot musician? Romance right now is not part of her plan.
I adored Nic’s friends Beck and Gabe, as well as her kooky neighbors! Beck, her mentee, is totally open to “Fairy Jane’s” advice and the magic of the journal. She encourages Nic to listen to its wisdom. Her nosey neighbors, Leslie and Laura, are a hoot and are not above giving advice of their own. 
There is so much I loved about this book that I can’t possibly cover it all. I loved the language and random Star Wars, Batman, and other movie references sprinkled through out the story. I found myself wishing I could speak to Nic about what was in the journal, about her decisions and her “Life Plan.”
Austentatious is a romantic, laugh out loud funny story and it is written in such a way I could see everything so clearly in my mind! It would make a great film! I would definitely recommend reading this one! 

I give this 5 stars!

I won my copy of Austentatious from Seeing Night Reviews.

You can buy a copy here.

About the Author:

Alyssa Goodnight (2012)
Much like the heroine of Austentatious, Alyssa Goodnight has lived in Austin, Texas, graduated from the University of Texas at Austin, worked in the semiconductor industry, and experienced the Weird. She has not owned a magical journal or ever bandied words with the spirit of Jane Austen. She would positively relish the opportunity. Alyssa currently lives between Houston and Galveston with her husband, two sons, and their adventure dog, Indiana Jones. She does her writing with an ice-cold can of Dr. Pepper and her reading with cake whenever possible. She is dutifully working on her next novel while dreaming of the day that she finds herself conscripted into a flash mob dance. Alyssa’s first novel, Unladylike Pursuits, was termed ‘irresistible’ by Booklist
Vist Alyssa at her website: Alyssa Goodnight; Facebook: Alyssa Goodnight; Twitter: @a_goodnight.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Guest Posting and Giveaway!

Today I'm doing something a little different, I'm over at Darcyholic Diversions but I'm not posting a review, instead I'm talking about me! I've posted about how I came to be a Darcyholic and why I started my blog. You can read that article, titled:

To Have a Man Like Darcy Love You... here.

Don't you love that title?! That was Barb's doing, my words but Barb thought to use them as a title! I love it!

On my blog I'm having a giveaway, just to make the day different all around! I'm giving away a 
$25 amazon gift card!

To enter win, all you have to do is one of the following:

  • Leave a comment here with your email.
  • Follow my blog via GFC
  • Follow me on twitter @CandyM037
  • Tweet about giveaway (once per day)

The more you do the better chance to win! So, make sure to leave a comment for each one you do. The winner will be selected by Giveaway ends May 29, 2012! 

Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, May 21, 2012

Reviewing SoulFire by Robin Helm on Indie Jane

Hi! Today I'm over at Indie Jane reviewing SoulFire by Robin Helm. This is the second book of Helm's Guardian Trilogy. It's an amazing series! Pop over and read the review! Thanks!

You can also read the review I wrote for her first book of the trilogy, Guardianhere.

I'm looking forward to read the final book in the trilogy, Legacy, coming out soon!

Comments are always welcome! 

This review was originally published on Indie Jane.

SoulFire by Robin M. Helm ~ My Review

In Helm's first book, Guardian, it was amazing to see the work of the spiritual world around us. SoulFire expounded upon this.

Darcy and El spend an amazing summer with evangelist, Jonathan Edwards on the SoulFire tour, traveling the country saving thousands of souls. At the same time El is falling in love with Darcy and learning his secrets, but not all of them. When she learns his last secret, will she still love him?

It was a beautiful scene when El had her first concert and all the angels were singing praise too. With dancing light beams, the angels twirled around the theater creating a awesome light show!

I love the banter between Darcy, Michael and Gabriel. It's quite humorous listening to them give Darcy dating advice! Darcy experiencing human emotion for the first time is also fun to see.

Unknown to El, Gregory is attacking them every chance he can, trying to discredit their ministry and get rid of her. Still not realizing what Gregory really is, El considers him her friend.

Although the ministry of SoulFire is amazing, I felt the story of El and Darcy moves along a little slowly. Any issues they may have are resolved quickly. Then, when the plot begins to thicken and my angst starts to build, Helm ends the story with a cliffhanger!

Helm has just published the last book of this series, Legacy. I, for one, cannot wait to get my hands on this! I must know what happens!

4 out of 5 stars.

Disclaimer: I was provided a book for honest review.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Getting to know Karen Aminadra ~ An Interview

Today, I am welcoming Karen Aminadra to my blog! She has a new book out, Charlotte ~ Pride & Prejudice Continues, you can read my review of her book here

1. Tell us a little bit about your self. (I love that you grew up in Hertfordshire!)

Yes that is great, but I didn't realise the significance of it until later.  I read a wonderful article where this man had used triangulation to pin point Longbourn, Meryton and Lucas Lodge using P&P, because Jane stated exactly how far it was to Gracechurch Street in London.  I was amazed to find that I lived 5 miles or less from Longbourn or Redbourn as it's called, and used to go shopping and worked once in Meryton itself! (Or Harpenden).  It really gave me a deeper understanding and knowledge of the places in P&P.  However, it's sad that the house Jane named Netherfield no longer exists and is a golf course.
I was born in London but grew up in Hemel Hempstead in Hertfordshire and loved it there.  It is so close to London, which is great when you are growing up and also near to the Ashridge National Trust Estate which is teeming with wildlife. I used to love picnicking there and watching the deer, just as Jane might have done too.
I now live in Wootton, Northamptonshire with my husband. This place also has a Jane Austen connection.  In Northanger Abbey, Henry Tilney mentions the Militia stationed at Northampton, well that's my village, and the Officer's Quarters are still standing as well as Wootton Hall (the Estate House) which is now, believe it or not, the Police Station.

2. I'm always interested in hearing about an author's writing process. How do you go about writing a story? Do you outline the story first or do you let the story evolve as you are writing it?

A little bit of both really.  I begin with an idea and I meditate on it, dwell on it and chew it over and over until it becomes a story line.  Then I'll think more deeply about the characters and that's when they wake up and want to demand my attention.  That's also when I have to start writing to keep up with their constant chatter. 
I usually know where I want to go in a book and how I want to get there, but more often than not, a character will clear their throat and demand that I listen to what they have to say. Just like Mrs Abbot in Charlotte, she was determined to do what she could for her friend and the whole card party scene wrote itself, I sat back and watched them get on with it!

3. Why did you choose to write about Charlotte?

Charlotte always intrigued me.  I completely understand why she married Mr Collins but I always questioned her motives.  I have rarely seen a human being who could live without affection, whether it be from a pet, a friend or a spouse, we all need to be loved.  After a conversation with a friend about Charlotte, I realised there was a story there.  Charlotte came from a loving family and went into Kent, with a husband that, let's be honest, makes most women's skin crawl and also she had to deal with being ordered about by Lady Catherine... how would you have felt? or dealt with it?

4. I have to ask, Mr. Collins, did you start out wanting to make him a likable person?

Ha ha no. Actually no.  My attention was on Charlotte and how on earth she would survive marriage to him.  But in the course of all her trials and tribulations I was forced to sit back and ask him how he was feeling. Then little by little he changed.  I certainly didn't do it on purpose and I admit to toying with the idea of killing him off.  I knew that Jane would have wanted me to at least try and make their marriage work, and in the process Mr Collins evolved and matured and I proudly admit (even if you can't admit it yourself Candy ha ha) that I LOVE Mr Collins now!

5. What are you currently working on?

My latest project is a book I started about ten years ago and just couldn't finish.  It begins in 1911 and then goes into 1912 in Suffolk, England.

Baronet Sir George Bancroft and his family are in financial ruin but they are rescued by his distant cousin Gregory Rogers.  However all is not as it appears and nothing returns to normal once Gregory arrives. He has the money, he now has Bancroft Hall and one by one all obstacles to his gaining the Baronetcy are being removed...his eye and interest then turns to young 18 year old Jane. She must also be removed or controlled, but will his affection for her stand in the way?
It's not been easy to write and I admit I had a hard time killing off my first character.

Thank you so much, Karen, for agreeing to this interview! It's been so fun getting to know you!

You can purchase a copy of Charlotte ~ P&P Continues at amazon

You can find Karen at

Follow Karen on Twitter  @kaminadra

Comments are always welcome!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Charlotte By Karen Aminadra

Lovely, lovely story! I found this story to be quite charming! I felt for the most part it stayed true to Jane Austen.
I know this book is about Charlotte, but could it be that I actually came to like, yes, like Mr. Collins! I did not think that was possible, but I did! (I cannot say love and Mr. Collins in the same sentence!)
Poor Charlotte finds herself regretting marrying Mr. Collins. She is bitter; she just wants to stay home and be left alone. The intimacies of marriage and the high-and-mighty Lady Catherine are more than she can bear. She finds herself in trouble for going shopping at a milliner not approved by Lady Catherine. Her punishment is being ostracized from Lady C’s company! (Terrible, I know!) That allows her more freedom and she enjoys life more. She becomes dear friends with Miss Thomas. She even becomes closer to Colonel Fitzwilliam, which leads to other complications!
During this time, Mr. Collins starts seeing the value in Charlotte. He also begins to see how ridiculous of a man he is, fawning and simpering to Lady Catherine, he now realizes how overbearing she is. His love for Charlotte grows, but is it too late?
I liked the side story with Miss Thomas and Mr. Simmons! They both have suffered a great deal from Lady Catherine's dictatorial nature.
I was so happy to see Elizabeth and Darcy come to help Charlotte during a moment of crisis! And loved it when Lady Catherine bursts in on them demanding to know why they are there! 
I enjoyed this story very much! I was surprised to see how much my opinions changed about some of my favorite characters and my not so favorite characters. I can’t wait to read Karen’s next story!
I give this 4 out of 5 stars.
I was provided a copy by the author for review.

Buy a copy of Charlotte here.

This completes my Supporting Characters category for the JA Spinoffs 2012 Reading Challenge.

About the Author:

Karen Aminadra (pronounced Amin-ah-dra) is an author and an English language teacher who lives in Northamptonshire, England with her husband.
She was born in London and grew up in Hertfordshire 'the land of Jane Austen's Pride & Prejudice'.
She has travelled and worked all over the world including South America, Russia and Europe.
She writes Jane Austen Continuation Novels, and other Fiction Novels with a good helping of historical romance, crime and mystery.
She loves to read, loves English history, Georgian architecture and is a dolls house miniaturist. She and her husband are currently working on a 1:12th scale Georgian Townhouse together.

You can find Karen at
Follow Karen on Twitter > @kaminadra

Comments are always welcome!

Monday, May 7, 2012

Darcy’s Decision By Maria Grace

What if Darcy ponders his self worth before he meets Elizabeth? What if he discovers a secret about his father? Ooh, yeah! In this story Maria Grace takes us down a different path in her first book of her Given Good Principles trilogy.
I really enjoyed Darcy's relationship with his curator Mr. Bradley. I found it delightful when Darcy would go to Mr. Bradley for council. Bradley would answer his questions in a way that would keep Darcy examining himself; helping him grow into a wonderful man.
When the living at Kympton became vacant, Wickham shows up to claim it. Maintaining it was the wish of Old Mr. Darcy, that he should have it. When Darcy denies him, Wickham seeks his revenge! 
Georgiana is a bit more rebellious in this variation! She wants to be treated as an adult so badly she is willing to defy Darcy. At 15, she is no longer a child but not yet an adult. It is a tough age.
Elizabeth does not make an appearance in this prequel, everything happens before Darcy goes to Hertfordshire, but the foundation is laid for what looks like a fantastic trilogy! I can't wait for the next book!    
I give this 4 out of 5 stars.

I won my copy from Indie Jane.

Buy a copy of Darcy's Decision here.

I'd love to hear what you think! Please leave a comment!
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